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Graeme Jones: "I’m still in the process of getting our best 18 together"

26 September 2019

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Hatters boss Graeme Jones has said that he is still getting his best 18 together after suffering three consecutive defeats against QPR, Hull City and Leicester City.

Town were beaten by a strong Foxes side on Tuesday night, but Jones explained there were still positives to take from the contest despite the 4-0 defeat.

“I think there were positives in the game, certainly in the first 30 minutes,” he said. “Remember we were unpicked by a set play (for the first goal), so Leicester, with all their wealth and ability, tried many things but it was a basic set play we got unpicked with, it wasn’t anything from general play. But after that it was a little bit different.”

Leicester scored again before half-time and twice more late on in the second half, but the manager insisted: “There were things in there for me going forward.”

It gave the gaffer another opportunity to assess his squad’s capabilities and that’s exactly what he did on the night, explaining: “I think we’ve looked at 21 players in the last two games, so I think we’re at another point where I’m assessing what’s going on. My job is to pick the best 18 players, so I’ve looked at the evidence and you will have to wait and see (about the team selection).

“I think when you start winning football matches regularly, the assessment comes to an end. We’re still a work in progress and we’re still looking for things. I think on the back of two league defeats it’s not perfect even though really, we have been competitive in every game, forget QPR because for the last 60 minutes we took them right to the wire.

“Against a Premier League outfit who have spent a fortune and possess quality players, it’s not really a level playing field and it’s the aspects you take from it. There were one or two things that I was pleased with.”

Despite the cup exit, Jones said that he still has a very tricky task picking the team for Saturday's trip to Blackburn.

“I have a selection headache with everybody! Seriously, I think when you lose two games, places are up for grabs and what you want to see then is football actions, and you want players to say come and pick me because I’m ready, which I got out of one or two.

“We’re still assessing and still recovering from the game with certain players and tomorrow and Saturday will be important for that.”

With Town hoping to get back to winning ways against Blackburn Rovers on Saturday, Jones is maintaining his positive outlook.

He explained: "I know what my remit is at the club and I think everyone would have settled for us to be a Championship team next season and that hasn’t changed, but I don’t want to look at it like that, I’m still in the process of getting our best 18 together and our best 11 together.

“We’ve played the same system all the way through so you know there’s still lots of things I’d like to work at before the work in progress is at a point where I think, right okay, we’ve maxed out here and we’re not at that point.”

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